Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Sea Camp 2012 Day One Slide Show

Base Camp
Boogie Boarding @ La Jolla
Tide Pooling @ Bird Rock (fog coming in)

Greetings from Sunny San Diego!

We all arrived at DIA around 7 am, although some were delayed a bit by the amount of traffic – Monday morning seemed to have many business travelers.  We got checked in at the Southwest check in, then lined up and headed for the security.  Mr. Framke led the way, with 49 students behind, Mrs. Du Houx bringing up the rear.  We got to security – along with many other people, so we went back and forth in the zigzag cue, until we finally reached the point where we took off our shoes and put our stuff in bins – about 45 minutes later.

 Instead of walking through a metal detector, you now go into this glass box, raise your arms above your head and the box examines you – I am assuming this is the X-ray security they were talking about last year.  Several students had to go back through this scanning two, three, or four times, but eventually we all got through.  One student had metal decorations on her skirt and had to wait for Mrs. Du Houx to come and be her guardian before the female security guard patted her down.  Two other female students had to wait for Mr. Framke to come and allow the security to go through their back packs and remove the hair gel they had put in the carrier-on-bag just before they left – needless to say the gel was confiscated. 

Once through security, we lined up again for counting, and took the train to concourse C.  Luckily our gate was close to the train entrance, because the plane was about to board.  Students had five minutes to use the restroom and fill their water bottles with Denver water before we started to board.  One student had lost his boarding pass, but he still had his luggage claim tags, so the lady at the check-in was very nice and reissued his boarding pass.

We were able to occupy the back of the plain and students were kept busy working on the algebra sheet Mr. Framke had passed out as we boarded.  The flight was smooth – the views spectacular – and the students were well behaved.  All seats were filled, and several passengers were decked out in their Bronco attire, I assume they were going to tonight’s game of Broncos vs. San Diego. The captain wished Denver well – I guess he is a Bronco fan too.

Once we landed, and started leaving the plane, Ashby noticed that some students had left their pencil bags and a hoodie, which she collected – thanks Ashby for watching out for your fellow students.  We went to the luggage carousels, all bags made it on time.  Stephanie from Sea Camp met us in baggage, and led us outside where we made a large mound of our bags and waited for the Sea Camp vans and trailer to arrive, which they did a few minutes later.  Students were loaded into the 14 passenger vans while Sea Camp staff loaded up the luggage in the trailer and the equipment van.  It took a while for us to make it to Fiesta Island, due to heavy traffic, but we finally made.  It was a sunny warm day – the weather report says that we should have warm clear weather all week.

Once at Sea Camp base camp at Fiesta Island, students were given an orientation about Sea Camp, and were then permitted to move into their dorm rooms.  The rooms were switched from what we have used the last several years, the girls are in the one large room dorm; the boys are in the two room dorm.  After getting situated and putting their bathing suits on under dry clothes, and getting sized for a wet suite, we had lunch.  Sea Camp has changed their catering company so instead of the subway style bread for lunch time sandwiches, students had the choice of different breads with each type of sandwich – chicken salad, ham, turkey, peanut butter and jelly and many more plus Fritos, a cookie and either an apple or orange. 

After lunch we loaded up in the vans and headed to La Jolla shores.  The coastal fog was rolling into Fiesta Island as we were leaving, but it was not present as we drove north.  Group B got to boogie board first, while group A did a beach walk, then the groups switched.  After bookie boarding, students were to change out of their wet bathing suits into dry clothes and put on their close toed shoes. 

We headed off to the tide pools at around 3, since today was a New Moon, the tidal range is large, with the low (spring) tide at about 3 pm.  Students were put into group of four or five students each with a bucket.  We headed down a large cement staircase to the tide pools, and the fun began.  Hermit crabs and fiddler crabs were all over the place, as were sea anemone, and algae.  Groups started screaming in excitement as they found baby fish (including a baby Garibaldi), small octopi, chitons, sea stars, brittle stars, sea hares, and much more.  We had a few casualties; Brandon and Collin were lifting up a rock, but somehow managed to cut both of their hands on it.  A Sea Camp staff person was right there to help clean up the hands and bandage them after disinfecting them.  There was a rumor started that Brandon had cut his palm because he was trying to catch a baby shark (about three feet long – sometimes longer depending on who was telling the tale) but the shark had slipped through his hand and sliced it open.  It was amazing how many students believed this whopper – at first – even though none of the pools were big enough to house a three foot long animal.

After collecting for some time, the group sat down and discussed the types of stresses that affect animals in tidal pools and looked at the cool animals we had found.  The animals were released before we returned to the vans.  As we sat and looked at things, the coastal fog moved in to the point that we could no longer see the water, the waves and the people paddle boarding off the shore from the tidal pools.

We returned to the vans, and drove through more traffic to return to Sea Camp base on Fiesta Island.  There was no fog south of the tidal pools so we had a clear view of Sea World and the area surrounding Sea Camp.  Back at camp, students helped with the wet-suit washing, then had free time to take showers, call home and work on their Sea Camp Journals.  Mr. Framke, Nolan and Peter went for a cross country workout/run in preparation for the state meet.

Dinner consisted of a tossed salad with dressing, lasagna, garlic bread, green beans and jelly for dessert.  As students finished eating; students had a little bit of down time before tonight’s labs. Tonight, one group is scheduled to do the fish lab, the other the invertebrate lab.  The air was chilly, so students were encouraged to put on their hoodies and long pants.

Note: This report will be put on Mrs. Du Houx’s Science Blog for today’s 8th grade entry.

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